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Getting to know you June 4


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One of my "issues" has always been financial fear. As my husband of 42 years and I became more financially secure, it got a little better. But as we appproached retirement, my fear reared its ugly head again. When I was diagnosed with IIIb lung cancer with no health insurance almost two years before I was eligible for Medicare, it wasn't hard to figure out what the lesson was for me in this experience. I had to learn to let it go.

What positive outcome has there been for you in this experience as a cancer survivor or caretaker of someone with cancer? What has it taught you? Is there something about yourself you didn't really like that it helped you change? Is there some major issue it helped you resolve, a relationship it helped you heal?

Judy in Key West

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Material things don't mean squat Thats what I learned from Cancer! HAd enough to pay the bills and that was about it. We managed with what little we had.

Ain't got mutch but got lots O' Love!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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What Have I Learned Since My Cancer Diagnosis?

I figure I could write a book about that. Besides the usual, live each day, money ain’t important, don’t sweat the small stuff, etc., I think I have gained much wisdom (others might argue about that but let them) including the following:

· You are the same person you were before your diagnosis. Cancer cannot beat the crap out of your personality!

· There is nobody waiting in the wings to give workaholics an award for their efforts…we do it to ourselves.

· I don’t give a flying fart about some of the things I used to think were important.

· Most people are very kind. However lung cancer survivors need to help people feel okay about their cancer and help them to know what to say or do.

· You find out all the good things that people really think of you. You know, kind of like a sneak preview of what might be said at your funeral! Most of us don’t get to hear all that good stuff in advance.

· You were perhaps more vain about your appearance than you thought. You HATE being bald, but you find out that you are really the only person paying much attention to that. Everyone else just sees “you”.

· You need to be at peace with everyone in your life at all times. If there is anyone you would need to call if you knew you were going to die tomorrow, do it now.

· How to swallow a pill! I used to have to chew them ….I can now swallow almost anything with my spit alone!

· Folks who work at cancer clinics do an awesome job with one of the hardest jobs in the world. I just thought my job was important!

· You need to be more “selfish”…you are no good to others if you are not looking out for yourself.

· That I am not as independent and strong as I thought and that it is okay to cry.

· That there actually is something to leaning on others for support. Never in a kizillion years did I think I would be on a support website or attend an in person support group.

· You have much more inner strength than you think.

· Cancer can really mess with your mind! You only just thought you were sane!

· There is much joy and humour after a cancer diagnosis!

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Well said, and I have just one to add:

It forces us to consider "the big step" in a way most of us haven't before. Within our human limitations, we seek to understand the meaning of life and how our current existence fits into the overall scheme of things. This has the potential of making our remaining months and years the richest we have known.



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This is a hard one.... I think that during the 3 yeard my Dad was sick, I always was worring, will he be here for my birthday, christmas, will he see his namesake (my son) born, will my kids remember him, ect. I should of just been concentrating on the time we had. I uprooted my family and moved them back home so i could be with him.

I have learned most importantly that live each day to the fullest, take advantage of the time you have WITH EVERONE, you never know when they wont be there. And never put off to tomorrow what you can say/do today.


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